Bigmouth Strikes Again: Morrissey hates them all
Thursday 30 March 2006
Even for an artist who made an album urging Viva Hate and built a following out of his eloquent brand of Northern misanthropy, heaven knows Morrissey sounds miserable now.
The former frontman of the Smiths, who has spent the past 10 years in self-imposed exile in Los Angeles, has unleashed a series of withering attacks on British politics, pop stars and celebrities. He even suggested Ronnie Corbett would make a more suitable monarch than Prince Charles.
And if his many fans thought there was still any chance of a reunion with the band that won him a place in the hearts of a million angst-ridden teenagers, the 46-year-old vegetarian, who begins a UK tour next month, revealed he would rather "eat his own testicles" than share a stage with the Smiths again.
Tony and Cherie Blair, David Beckham, Jordan, Pete Doherty and Kate Moss all come under Morrissey's scornful gaze in an interview with Uncut magazine published today.
In one particularly devastating broadside aimed at the UK musical establishment, he lampoons the suggestion he may have been disappointed at missing out on a Brit Award for Best Male Artist last year. "The Brits are ghastly and there has never been a time when they haven't got it wrong. For me to ever accept a Brit, well, I never would. It would be like Laurence Olivier being happy getting a TV Times award," he said.
As for the Prime Minister and his wife, the singer disclosed that it was the Blairs' appearance rather than their politics that left him feeling negative.
"I don't like his face, I don't like his expression. I don't think anybody else does," he said. "And I can't stand Cherie Blair's face, I just wonder if there can ever be a photograph of her where she has her mouth shut."
As for the Royal Family, it appears that Morrissey's antipathy remains undimmed since he fantasised in "The Queen is Dead" about breaking in to Buckingham Palace armed with a "sponge and a rusty spanner".
Back in 1986 he pondered whether Charles longed to "appear on the front of the Daily Mail, dressed in your mother's bridal veil." Today he says: "The very idea of Charles being King is laughable. You might as well say that Ronnie Corbett will be king one day. I think that would give people more pleasure."
On the Babyshambles singer Doherty, whose drug addiction has been rarely out of the media, he shows something approaching compassion. "I think it is unfortunate he is more associated with the media and the press and hooha and the silliness than he is with music. It's a terrible trap and he's jumped straight into it." However, he adds an elegant put down: "I don't honestly have an opinion on him. I don't care."
But he is markedly less sympathetic towards Doherty's on-off supermodel girlfriend Kate Moss, saying: "[She] has just dragged him down to her level."
There is similarly short shrift for the likes of David and Victoria Beckham and Jordan. "The word celebrity now is so base and disgusting and seems to apply to anybody that is anything but a celebrity," he says.
But he saves his strongest denunciations for his one-time band mates. Having recently turned down a reported £2.5m offer to reform the Smiths for a one-off show, he drew a line under the prospect of a reunion. "It has been 18 years since it ended; I don't know them, they don't know me, they know nothing about me, I know nothing about them. Anything I know about them is unpleasant, so why on earth do we want to be on stage together making music?
"I would rather eat my own testicles than reform the Smiths, and that's saying something for a vegetarian," he said.
But Morrissey also revealed that dislike is not always a one-way with him. "There have been a few people who have shunned me. Keith Richards... he knew me, but he didn't actually like me," he said. Former Manchester United footballer Eric Cantona was even more obvious in his dislike. "He just completely blanked me in a shocking way... just completely wiped me out of history."
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